Seven senior Mishcon de Reya lawyers are defecting to rival global law firm Greenberg Traurig, in advance of Mishcon’s plans to float on the London Stock Exchange.
The news follows a summer of bidding wars between UK and US law firms for staff in London, prompted by a boom in demand for legal expertise during one of the busiest periods for mergers and acquisitions.
Top US law firm Goodwin Procter offered sign-on bonuses to London staff worth up to £36,000, while Slaughter and May increased the salaries of newly qualified lawyers to £100,000, to match those of rival Clifford Chance, according to reports.
The exodus of leavers from British law firm Mishcon de Reya includes Kathryn Garbett, Jo Rickards, Claire Broadbelt, Annabel Thomas, Martin Shobbrook, Hannah Blom-Cooper, and Matt Hancock who will join Greenberg Traurig as shareholders, the US law firm, with offices in London, confirmed this morning.
The London office of Greenberg Traurig, which employs around 2,300 attorneys globally, is based in the Shard.
Among the new appointments Garbett and Broadbelt will co-chair the civil fraud and business disputes practice and Rickards will become chair of the white collar defence and investigations practice at Greenberg Traurig.
“Ever since we began our London office in 2009 […] we have been patiently creating a transformational team here that would be vital to our overall European strategic growth for many years to come,” said executive chairman of Greenberg Traurig Richard A. Rosenbaum, in a statement.
The new hires will bolster the firm’s litigation practice to make up a third of its London office, which will soon number 120 lawyers, continued Rosenbaum.
Last month Mishcon de Reya partners approved the law firm’s plans to go public on the London Stock Exchange, it was widely reported.
When the move goes ahead, all Mishcon staff, including trainees and junior lawyers, will become shareholders – though the timeframe is still unclear.
The firm, founded in 1937 in Brixton, is one of the most prominent law firms in the capital.
It will be only the sixth traditional law partnership to make the transition to becoming a publicly listed legal services company.